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A Walking Tour Around Whitby's East Cliff Area


First, as Harry says on his Ghost Walks, there is the right way, the wrong way and the Whitby way. No where else on the east coast will you find a harbour with an East Cliff and West Cliff, so these names might be a bit confusing a best. Well, the easy answer is the Abbey is on East Cliff and the larger shops etc are on the East Cliff.

There are plenty are different places to choose to park in Whitby, so I start the description on the swing bridge over the River Esk, between the two cliffs. From here we head up the road and into the East Cliff area. If you take the first left, just before my favourite fish and chip shop, there are a few shops to browse, including a fish mongers with an array of sharks jaws in the window!

Keep walking down the road until the old Marketplace and turn into here. As you cross this small but interesting area, you will see on the opposite side of the road Justin Chocolatier. This fabulous little shop on Church Street is an excellent place to make a stop in, although crowded in peak season. There are usually some seasonal treats in store, we usually pop in for Treacle Toffee at the end of October ready for bonfire night. At this time, it is also usually busy with the Goths buying Halloween treats such as Dracula's Coffins. There is a wonderful assortment of not just chocolate, but also toffees and fudges. Well worth a visit, but watch the wallet and waistline.

Turn right out of Justins and start following the road towards the sea. Pass the second and much smaller Justins shop and arrive at the bottom of the Abbey steps. This is where most people would stop and head up the steps, but hold off that treat and continue along the road which now becomes Henrietta Street. About half way along on the right is one of Whitby's hidden gems - Fortunes. It has featured in popular TV cookery programs and is the only remaining traditional smoke house still running in Whitby. Pop in for some smoked kippers, or if you do not fancy them, try some pate or traditionally smoked bacon.

Retrace your steps from here back to the Abbey steps. There are 199 steps up to the Abbey and you will usually see children and adults alike walking up and down counting the steps. Pop up the steps if you are feeling brave, for a good view from the Church back over Whitby, or a walk around the Abbey.

Lastly, retrace your steps as far as Justins and when you get there look across the road and you will see what is our favourite cafe, Monks Haven Cafe. Wonderful service and well worth a quick stop at the end of a walk around Whitby's East Cliff.

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